University of Sydney Handbooks - 2016 Archive

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Neuroscience is an interdisciplinary major offered by the School of Medical Sciences: Disciplines of Anatomy and Histology, Pharmacology and Physiology and the School of Psychology, Faculty of Science. Units of study in this major are available at standard and advanced level.

Program structure and content

Neuroscience encompasses a diverse range of disciplines that cross traditional subject boundaries. The study of Neuroscience ranges from anatomy to neuronal function; from the molecular and cellular biology of the neuron to the complex phenomenon of perception, emotion and memory; from the regulation of breathing and blood pressure to movement of the body; from development of the nervous system to ageing; from structure/function understanding to neurodegeneration and mental illness; from cell culture to in vivo human brain imaging.

First year planning for a Neuroscience major

Recommended Junior units:
Human Biology BIOL1003/1903/1993, Molecular Biology MBLG1001/1901/1991, Psychology (PSYC1002), and Chemistry (CHEM1001).

Majoring in Neuroscience

A major in Neuroscience is designed to provide a foundation in the basic biology of the brain as well as the fundamentals of cognition. Students are able to focus their cross-disciplinary studies with a molecular, cellular, anatomical and behavioural concentration. Refer to Table I for an enrolment guide and to entries in specific subject areas for Unit of Study descriptions. A cross-disciplinary major requires careful selection of subjects to fulfil the requirements of the major. Research in neuroscience is vibrant and varied. The understanding of brain function and disorders of the brain are areas of high priority internationally.

Requirements for a major

For a major in Neuroscience, students are required to complete at least 24 credit points of the senior elective units of study listed in this subject area in Table 1. Units from at least two subject areas must be chosen from the three subject areas NEUR, PSYC and PCOL.


There are many opportunities for high-achieving students to undertake honours study within the field of Neuroscience. Honours projects in Neuroscience can be undertaken within individual Disciplines: Anatomy, Pathology, Pharmacology, Physiology, and Psychology, as well as in our associated research centres. Students should canvass respective Disciplines during their senior studies for details of research projects, admission criteria and enrolment details.

Contact and further information

Dr Karen Cullen

T +61 2 9351 2696
Anderson Stuart Building F13
University of Sydney 2006